Crown jewels: Wikis


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The Imperial State Crown of the United Kingdom

Crown jewels are jewels or artifacts of the reigning royal family of their respective country. They belong to monarchs and are passed to the next sovereign to symbolize the right to rule. They may include crowns, sceptres, orbs, swords, rings, and other objects. See also: regalia. Despite most crown jewels, for example the ones on the Imperial State Crown, are small, the materials they are carved from are extreamly rare, causing most of them to be almost, if not, priceless.





The Golden Stool (sika 'dwa) of the Ashanti people in Ghana, used in the enthronement ritual of the Asantehene, the Ashanti ruler, is believed to embody the very soul of the Ashanti people and is thus the most sacred ritual object in Ashanti culture. Only the Asantehene is allowed to touch it.


The traditional emblem of the Mwami (king) was the Karyenda drum. These holy drums were kept at special drum-sanctuaries throughout the country and were brought out for special ceremonies only. One such place is in Gitega, location of the ibwami royal court.

Central African Republic

See Emperor Bokassa and the Central African Empire. The jewels were also told that they had special powers. Kings would wear crowns and lightning would come out of their eyes.


  • Ancient Egypt

The treasures of the Pharaohs can be seen in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo and in other museums throughout the world.

  • Kingdom of Egypt

Most of the Crown Jewels of the Mehmet Ali Dynasty are at the Museum at Abdin Palace in Cairo.


The principal crowns worn by Ethiopian emperors and kings and empress regnant are unique in that they are made to be worn over a turban. They usually have the form of a cylinder of gold (although some of the crowns at the Church of St. Mary in Zion in Aksum have the form of a gold cube) with a convex dome on the top with usually some form of cross on a pedestal. These gold cylinders/cubes are composed of openwork, filigree, medallions with images of saints in repousse and settings of precious stones. Fringes of small gold cones on short gold chains are also frequently used in the decoration of these crowns, both on the cylinders/cubes themselves and on the pedestal supporting the cross on the top. Also, convex circular gold medallions/disks of openwork or filigree hanging from chains over the ears are also frequently found on these crowns as well, much like the ornaments that formerly hung from sides of the Byzantine imperial crowns and which hang from the sides and back of the Holy Crown of St. Stephan of Hungary. Some crowns also appear to have a semi-circular platform for additional ornaments attached to the lower front edge of the crown (on two of the crowns of Menelik II these platforms each support a small gold statuette of St. George fighting the dragon). For a photograph of one of Menelik II's crowns;[1] a photograph of Haile Selassie wearing his imperial crown.[2]

Other parts of the Ethiopian regalia include, a jeweled gold sword, a gold and ivory sceptre, a large gold orb with cross, a diamond studded ring, two gold filigreed lances of traditional Ethiopian form, long scarlet robes heavily embroidered in gold. Each of these seven ornaments is given to the emperor after each of his seven anointing on his head, brow and shoulders with seven differently scented holy oils, the last being the crown itself.[3]

These imperial robes consist of a number of tunics and cloaks, of scarlet cloth heavy embroidered in gold and including an elbow length cape with a deeply scalloped edge, fringed in gold (the scallops on either side of the opening on the front being particularly long, giving them the appearance of a western priest’s stole) and two large squares of scarlet cloth similarly heavily embroidered and fringed in gold attached to each shoulder. This cape is apparently identical in form to that also worn by the Patriarch and other higher ranking members of the Ethiopian clergy.

The empress consort also is crowned and given a ring at her at her husband’s coronation, although formerly this took place at a semi-public court ceremony three days after the emperor’s coronation. Her scarlet imperial mantle has a very similar shape and ornamentation as that of the emperor, but lacking the scalloped edge and shoulder squares. The crowns of empress consorts took a variety of different forms; that of Empress Menen was modeled on the traditional form of European sovereign’s crown. Other members of the imperial family and high ranking Ethiopian princes and nobles also had crowns, some resembling the coronets worn by the members of the British peerage at a British coronation, while others have uniquely Ethiopian forms.

Traditionally Ethiopian emperors were crowned at the Church of St. Mary of Zion in Axum, the site of the chapel in which is kept what is believed to be the Ark of the Covenant, in order to validate the new emperor’s legitimacy by reinforcing his claim to descent from Menelik I, the son of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, who is believed to have brought the Ark from Jerusalem to Axum. Their imperial crowns were afterwards frequently donated to the church and are kept in the church’s treasury — medieval crowns and those of more recent monarchs[4] - although other monarchs have given their crowns and other regalia to various other churches. The Crown Jewels used at the coronation of Emperor Haile Selassie are kept at the museum in the National Palace (formerly the Jubilee Palace) in Addis Ababa.

Ghana and Cameroon

The symbol of the royal power of the Asantehene (ruler of the Ashanti) is the sacred Golden Stool, the Sika 'dwa. It is used for the enthronement and symbolizes the power of the Ashanti. It is kept alongside with other royal regalia at the Royal Palace in Kumasi.


Radama II, with crown

The crown of the Malagasy sovereign was made in France for Ranavalona I. It was large crown made of gold and very heavy. In its essential form it followed the pattern of crown associated with a sovereign in European heraldry and had four arches which intersected at the top of the crown, while the circlet was made of openwork and set with precious stones and from the circlet between the arches were triangular leaf-like ornaments which also were set with precious stones (pearls?). One of the two most distinctive features of the crown was a large fan-like ornament generally described as a representation of seven of the spearhead of the traditional Malagasy warrior’s spear joined together at the base, but in photographs and paintings it appear to look more like seven large feathers. The second distinctive feature is the representation of a falcon at the very top of the crown in the same position a cross would occupy on the top of an orb in the traditional crown of a Christian sovereign. The falcon is a traditional symbol of the Malagasy sovereign. The inside of the crown was filled with a large red velvet cap — red being the color traditionally associated with royalty in Malagasy tradition. The crown appears to have been destroyed with many other royal artifacts when the Rova (the royal palace and royal tomb complex) in Antananarivo burned on November 6, 1995. There is a painting of Ravavalona I wearing this crown.


The Nigerian Royal Regalia is normally kept in the capital city of the respective state. See also List of Nigerian traditional states.

List of some of the kingdoms Abeokuta - Adamawa - Benin - Borno - Edo - Fika (Nigeria)|Fika - Gombe - Ibadan - Ijebu - Ile Ife - Ilorin - Jos - Kano - Katsina - Lagos - Onitsha - Oshogbo - Oyo - Sokoto - Tiv - Warri - Zaria (Zazzau) - Zamfara


Close to the old capital of Butare lies the nearby Nyabisindu, formerly known as Nyanza, the traditional seat of Rwanda’s monarchy. The Royal Palace at Nyanza, a domed construction made with traditional materials, has been restored to its 19th century state and is now maintained as a museum. Further historical artifacts are kept at the National Museum in Butare.

South Africa



There are several kingdoms in Uganda. During the upheavals after gaining independence, the monarchies were abolished. Only in the 1990s were the various kings restored to their thrones. Although they do not wield any political powers anymore, they are still a symbol of unity and continuance to their people. The royal regalia normally consisted of the Royal Drums, and are kept at the various palaces in the capital cities of the Ugandan states. See Ugandan Royal Regalia.

The kingdoms Ankole - Buganda - Bunyoro - Busoga - Toro



The treasures of Burma´s Konbaung Dynasty are kept in the National Museum in Yangon. They include items such as the Sihasana Pallanka (Great Lion Throne), and various other items. Other items can be seen in the old capital city of Mandalay.


The Koh-I-Noor Diamond, mined in India in antiquity, is now set in the Crown of Queen Elizabeth (the deceased Queen Mother).


The royal regalia of Brunei are kept in the Royal Regalia Building, which was completed in 1992, in Bandar Seri Begawan. Also housed are the Royal Chariot, the gold and silver ceremonial armoury and the jewel-encrusted crowns.


The most important item for the assumption of the throne were the Imperial Seals, which gave the emperor the mandate of heaven authority. These are kept either in the Forbidden City or the National Palace Museum. Numerous crowns, robes, jewels and headwear made especially for coronations and other official events. They usually contain very large Manchurian pearls and most date from the Qing Dynasty.


Indonesia has various kingdoms and sultanates, all with their own unique history. The most known royal courts are distributed amongst the islands of Java, Madura, Bali, Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, and Sumbawa. There are 23 royal courts or more which still exist today, headed either by a sultan or a ruler. Although today only HM the Sultan of Yogyakarta wields any political influence as the governor. In Indonesia the royal courts are either called Kraton or istana. Below are some of them listed:

Kraton Ngayogyakarta Hadiningrat and Puro Pakualaman;

Kraton Surakarta Hadiningrat and Puro Mangkunegaraan;

Kraton Kasepuhan of Cirebon, Kraton Kanoman, and Kraton Kacirebonan;

  • Madura

Kraton Sumenep;

Istana Siak;

Istana Palembang Darussalam;

Istana Maimun of Kesultanan Deli;

Istana Amantubillah Mempawah, and Istana Alwatzkubillah;

Kutai of Tenggarong;

  • Sumbawa

Istana Bima;

Istana Luwu;

Istana Walio of Buton Island;

Istana Saoraja of Bone and Istana Balla Lompoa of Gowa.

Various royal regalia and other items used for court functions may be viewed in some the respective palaces.

Iran (Persia)

The Imperial Crown Jewels of Iran (alternatively known as the Imperial Crown Jewels of Persia) includes several elaborate Crowns and decorative Thrones, 30 tiaras and numerous aigrettes, a dozen jewel laden swords and shields, a vast amount of precious unset gemstones, numerous plates and other dining services cast in precious metals and encrusted with gems and several other more unique items (such as a gemstone globe) collected by the Iranian monarchy during its 2,500 year existence.

For many centuries the Iranian Crown Jewels were kept in the vaults of the Imperial Treasury. However, in the early 20th century, the first Pahlavi Shah transferred ownership of the crown jewels to the state as part of a massive restructuring of the country's financial system. Later in the 1950s his son and successor, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, decreed that the most spectacular of these items be put on public display at the Central Bank of Iran.


There are many regalias which belonged to the various Korean kingdoms. There are regalias of the Silla Dynasty, the Chosun Dynasty, the Goryeo Dynasty, The Goguryeo Dynasty, the Baekjae Dynasty, the Gaya Dynasty, the Buyeo Dynasty, the Balhae Dynasty, the Tamora Dynasty, and the Gojoseon Dynasty. Many of the regalias of dynasties which consisted most of present day China and parts of Russia were lost due to the fact that the palaces and royal tombs were plundered by the Chinese since the dynasties lost their land to the Qing Mongolian Dynasty. The surviving regalias are from the Silla Dynasty, the Gaya Dynasty, the Baekjae Dynasty, the Joseon Dynasty, and the Goguryeo Dynasty. The Silla regalis is noted for its esquisite gold and jade workmanship which research shows resulted from the spread of goldsmithing from Egypt and Mesopotamia to Korea via the Silk Road which passed through Silla. Silla regalia consists of a crown, a golden girdle, a golden belt, a string of 50 gold and jade and lapiz lazul necklaces, a sword, a dagger, golden shoes, earrings, and more than 35 rings and hairpins. However, the Silla custom was that every king and queen had their own set of regalia, hence the regalia for each monarch was buried with them in their tombs, warranting the creation of many different regalias depending on personal preferences, fashion, and technology. The Joseon dynasty regalis consists of formal jewel encrusted wigs for the queen and everyday crows encrusted with diamonds, rubies, jade, lapiz lazul, aquamarine, pearls, emeralds, and tigers eye. The Baekjae regalia is similar to the Silla gold crowns but are even more arabesque and consisted of magnificent girdles.


The Imperial Regalia of Japan (三種の神器 Sanshu no Jingi?) ("Three Sacred Treasures") consist of the Holy Sword Kusanagi (草薙剣), the Holy Jewel Yasakani no magatama (八尺瓊曲玉), and the Holy Mirror Yata no kagami (八咫鏡). The sword and the mirror are kept at the Shinto shrines in Nagoya and Ise in Central Japan, and the jewel at the Kokyo Imperial Palace in Tokyo.

The enthronement cerenomy is traditionally held in Kyoto. The Imperial Throne is kept at the Gosho Imperial Palace in Kyoto.


The regalia of Laos are kept in the Royal Palace Museum in Luang Prabang.


The royal regalia of Malaysia are kept in the Istana Negara (National Palace) in Kuala Lumpur. The regalia is worn by HM the King (ms: Yang di-Pertuan Agong), and HM the Queen (Raja Permaisuri Agong) during certain ceremonies, such as the election as head of state, HM's birthday, awards ceremonies, and the calling of parliament.

They consist of the Tengkolok Diraja (Royal Head Dress), the Queen's Gendik di Raja (Royal Tiara), the Keris Panjang di Raja (Royal Long Kris or Keris of State), the Kris Pendek di Raja (Royal Short Keris), the Cogan Alam dan Cogan Agama (Sceptre of the Universe and Sceptre of Religion), the Cokmar (Maces), the Pedang Keris Panjang dan Sundang (Royal sword, long Keris and sword Keris), the Payung Ubur-ubur Kuming] dan Tombak Berambu (Yellow-fringed umbrella and tassled lances), and the Pending di Raja (Royal Waist Buckle).

Malaysia is a federal state, consisting of thirteen states and two federal territories. Out of these, nine are monarchies headed by sultans. Royal regalia and other items of the rulers are kept in the respective palaces and courts. These are:

Johore - Kedah - Kelantan - Negeri Sembilan - Pahang - Perak - Perlis - Selangor - Terengganu


Thailand (Siam)

The Royal Regalia, Royal Utensils, and the Royal Eight Weapons of Sovereignty comprise a total of 28 items. The Royal Regalia consists of the Great Crown of Victory, the Sword of Victory, the Royal Staff, the Royal Fan (or Flywhisk), and the Royal Slippers. The 28 items are traditionally presented to the Kings of Thailand at their coronation ceremonies. They are kept, amongst other royal items, at the Grand Palace in Bangkok.


The signs of the imperial power of the Nguyen Emperors were the Great Imperial Seal and the Sword. When Bao Dai, the last Emperor of Vietnam, abdicated in August 1945 at Huế he is recorded to have surrendered the royal insignia to the new communist authorities. What happened to them after this is not known, but presumably they took them away, perhaps to Hanoi. In 1949 the former emperor became "Head of State" of the Republic of (south) Vietnam, was not crowned, and soon resigned in 1954 to spend the rest of his life in exile. In 1968 the city of Huế was the scene of fierce fighting between the communist Vietminh and the US Army. The imperial palace was bombed, ransacked and almost completely destroyed. It is possible that the imperial insignia, if they had not been removed and taken elsewhere in 1945, were lost or destroyed at this time.



Crown of Skanderbeg dating from the 15th Century now kept in Vienna

The crown of Skanderbeg, believed to have been created for the medieval king in the 15th Century, was smuggled out of Albania members of the Kastrioti family following the occupation of Albania by the Ottoman Empire. The crown eventually found it's way into the collections of the Habsburg dynasty (via an Italian noble family) and currently resides in the Schatzkammer in Vienna, Austria. In 1931, King Zog of Albania made a rare foreign tour and visited Vienna in an unsuccessful attempt to repatriate the crown, presumably for a future coronation (he considered giving himself the regnal name "Skanderbeg III"). Several replicas exist in Albania, most notably at Kruja Castle.


Some of the Austrian Crown Jewels being held by Franz I of Austria. They include the Imperial Crown of Austria, the Sceptre, the Sword and the coronation mantle.

The Austrian Crown Jewels (de: Insignien und Kleinodien) are kept at the Schatzkammer (Imperial Treasury) located in the Hofburg Palace in Vienna. They are a collection of imperial regalia and jewels dating from the 10th century to the 19th. They are one of the biggest and most important collection of royal objects still today, and reflect more than a thousand years of European history. The treasury can be quantified into six important parts:

The most outstanding objects are the ancient crown of the Holy Roman Emperors and also the insignia of the much later hereditary Austrian emperors. They consist of the 10th Century Imperial Crown of the Holy Roman Empire as well as the associated Orb, Cross, and Holy Lance, the Imperial Crown, the Imperial Orb and the mantle of the Austrian Empire, and the Coronation Robes of the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia.


The 11th century Crown of Zvonimir was a Papal gift to King Zvonimir of Croatia. It is thought likely to have been lost during the Ottoman invasions of the Balkans in the 1500s. The distinctive crown adorns several local flags in Croatia and Dalmatia.

Czech Republic (Bohemia)

The jewels (cs: korunovační klenoty), and the Crown of Saint Wenceslas of Bohemia (Svatováclavská koruna) are kept in Prague Castle (Pražský hrad) and are displayed to the public only once every (circa) eight years.

The Crown of Christian V of Denmark

The crown is named and dedicated after the Duke and Patron Saint Wenceslas I of the Přemyslids dynasty of Bohemia. The crown has an unusual design, with vertical fleurs-de-lis standing at the front, back and sides. Made from gold and precious stones, its weight is 2.475g. It was made for King Charles IV in 1346. Since 1867 it has been stored in St. Vitus Cathedral of Prague Castle. The jewels have always played an important role as a symbol of Bohemian statehood.

An ancient Czech legend says that any usurper who places the crown on his head is doomed to die within a year. In the eyes of some this was confirmed during World War II when Reinhard Heydrich, the Nazi governor of the puppet Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia secretly wore them believing himself to be a great king, and was assassinated less than a year later by the Czech underground.[5]


The crown jewels and other royal regalia of Denmark are kept in Rosenborg Castle in Copenhagen.

The never used crown of the King of Finland and Karelia, Duke of Åland, Grand Prince of Lapland, Lord of Kaleva and the North


In 1918 a unique crown was designed in Finland for the proposed "King of Finland and Karelia, Duke of Åland, Grand Prince of Lapland, Lord of Kaleva and the North" (Suomen ja Karjalan kuningas, Ahvenanmaan herttua, Lapinmaan suuriruhtinas, Kalevan ja Pohjolan isäntä). However, the political situation changed before the new crown could be used in the coronation ceremony of Finland's first independent monarch. By the end of 1918 the uncrowned monarch had abdicated and Finland had adopted a new republican constitution. The crown which exists today was made by goldsmith Teuvo Ypyä in the 1990's, based on the original drawings, and is kept in a museum in Kemi where it can be seen today. The crown, which is made of silver gilt, consists of a circlet and cap decorated with the arms in enamel of various provinces of the realm. Above the circlet are two arches. Topping the arches is not a Globus Crusiger like in most European crowns, but a gold rampant lion in the form as found in the Coat of arms of Finland. Inner circumference of the crown is approximately 58 centimeters and it weight about 2 kilograms.


The surviving French Crown Jewels, principally a set of historic crowns now set with decorated glass, are on display in the Galerie d'Apollon of the Louvre, France's premier museum and former royal palace,


The Dukes of Brittany were crowned with a royal crown said to be that of the former kings of Brittany in a ceremony designed to emphasise the royal ancestry and sovereignty of the reigning duke. After the marriage of Anne of Brittany to Charles VIII of France in 1513 Breton independence began to slip away. The last person known to have been crowned in Brittany with their royal crown was Francis III, Duke of Brittany in 1524. He was a member of the ruling dynasty of France and heir to the French throne. He died in 1536 and was succeeded as dauphin by his brother Henry. Henry became King Henry II of France in 1547 when his father, Francis I, died. Neither Henry nor any of his successors bothered to get crowned separately as Duke of Brittany but did use the title. The location of the Breton crown is unknown but it is thought to have been moved to Paris at some point. It could have been broken and dispersed with other parts of the redundant French crown jewels after the restoration of the republic in 1875.

Alexander II of Imereti (Georgia) wearing the lost crown of Imereti



There is no information about any crown for Kartli-Kakheti predating 1798 although presumably there was one. It is likely that the ancient crown or crowns, traditionally kept at Mtskheta, were lost in 1795 when Shah Agha Mohammed Khan of Persia invaded Kartli and ravaged the kingdom.

A replacement crown was commissioned by George XII of Georgia for his coronation in 1798. It was made in Russia and deviated from the traditional Georgian design. It was a closed crown or "corona clausa" made of gold and decorated with 145 diamonds, 58 rubies, 24 emeralds and 16 amethysts. It took the form of a circlet surmounted by ornaments and eight arches. A globe surmounted by a cross rested on the top of the crown.

Following the death of George XII in 1800 the crown was sent to Moscow and deposited in the Kremlin to prevent the coronation of any of his successors. In 1923 it was presented to the National Museum of Georgia in Tbilisi but in 1930 it was once again sent back to Moscow where this time it was broken up.[6]

A sword of King Heraclius II survives and is kept at the National Museum in Tbilisi.


The Crown of Imereti dating from the 12th century and believed to have been commissioned by David IV of Georgia was known to have been kept at the monastery at Gelati after the last king Solomon II was deposed in 1810 and Imereti occupied by Russia. It is recorded as remaining there until at least 1917 after which it disappears from the record, presumably stolen or destroyed during the communist revolution, but perhaps hidden.





Grand Duke Karl II of Baden was given a crown by Napoleon I, the cousin by marriage of his wife, Stéphanie Louise Adrienne de Beauharnais. The design of the crown follows the general pattern typical of a European royal crown, but is unique in that the circlet and the arches of the crown are made of gold fabric rather than of a precious metal such as gold or silver-gilt. The precious stones which ornament this crown are in metal settings which are attached to this circlet and these arches much like brooches pinned to fabric. At the intersection of the four arches of this crown is a blue enameled orb and a cross both set with diamonds. The cap on the inside of the crown is made of the same crimson velvet which also covers the reverse sides of the arches of the crown.[7]


In 1806, Napoleon I of France conquered the Holy Roman Empire. He restructured the many German states and the Duchy of Bavaria was promoted to a 'Kingdom'. The ruling Wittelsbach Duke became Maximilian I became King of Bavaria. With his new status, the King ordered new regalia to be made, which included the 35.56-carat Wittelsbach Diamond, an oval Old Mine cut blue diamond. The diamond's history dates back to the 1660s and for the most part has been uneventful. The gem was offered with other Bavarian Crown Jewels in a 1931 auction at Christies in London, but apparently it did not sell, nor did it return to its display in Munich. Rumors included one that the stone had been sold illegally in 1932 through a Munich jeweller and had reappeared in Holland. Later research unveiled the fact that the gem had actually been sold in Belgium in 1951 and that it had changed hands again in 1955. In 1958 millions of visitors came to Brussels for the World Exhibition and many must have cast eyes upon the jewelry display which included a large blue diamond. But not one person appeared to have any inkling that this was in fact a missing famous gem: the Wittelsbach Diamond. Credit for the recognition of the true identity of the blue diamond must go to Joseph Komkommer, a leading figure in the Belgian diamond industry and the fourth generation of a diamond family. In January 1962 Mr. Komkommer received a phone call asking him to look at an Old Mine cut diamond with a view of its recutting. When he opened the package he received a shock — a dark blue diamond is among the rarest and most valuable of gems. Mr. Komkommer at once recognized that the diamond was one of historical significance and that it would be a tragedy to recut it. With the assistance of his son, Jacques Komkommer, he identified the diamond as the 'lost' blue diamond that was formerly owned by the House of Wittelsbach. He thereupon formed a consortium of diamond buyers from Belgium and the USA which purchased the diamond, then valued at £180,000. The vendors were the trustees of an estate whose identity remained undisclosed. Finally, the Wittelsbach was acquired by private collector in 1964. It was announced in October 2008 the diamond would be offered for auction at Christies in December. Its original Golden Fleece ornament can be seen today in the Treasury of the Residenz Palace in Munich, a blue glass replica of the Wittelsbach in place of where the diamond was set.

The Bavarian Coronation Set consists of the Crown of Bavaria, the Crown of the Queen (originally made for Maximilian's Queen, Caroline Frederika of Baden, the State Sword, the Royal Orb, and the Royal Sceptre.




After they achieved sovereign status the Princes of Liechtenstein in 1719 had a crown made to symbolize their new status. The Princes were apparently never crowned or otherwise formally invested with this crown. The circlet of the crown was modeled on the circlet of the Imperial Crown of_Austria, while eight jeweled acanthus leaves, alternately large and small, rested on the rim of the circlet. As with the imperial crown of Rudolf II, the precious stones used in this crown were white (diamonds and pearls) and red (rubies or red spinels), which may have had some alchemist significance. Inside the crown was a red velvet cap topped with a large jeweled button. Although the crown itself no longer exists, a copy was made by the people of Liechtenstein and given to Prince Franz Joseph II on his 70th birthday.




The treasures of the Kings of Saxony are kept in Dresden.

Thurn and Taxis



Crown of Wilhelm II, Hohenzollern Castle

The crown and the insignia of the Kingdom of Prussia are kept at Hohenzollern Castle in Sigmarigen, Baden-Württemberg.


Holy Roman Empire

The Imperial Regalia like the Holy Crown of Charlemagne, the orb, the sceptre, the Holy Lance, and various other items are kept in the Schatzkammer Treasury in Vienna, Austria.


The enameled plates from the crown of the Byzantine emperor Constantine IX Monomachos, 1042-1055, made c. 1042, survive in Budapest.
  • The crown of the Byzantine emperor Nicephorus Phocas (963-969) at the Great Lavra monastery on Mount Athos.[8]
  • The enameled plates from the crown of the Byzantine emperor Constantine IX Monomachos, 1042-1055, made c. 1042, survive in Budapest.


The crown jewels of Hungary are on display in the Parliament Building in Budapest.


The Crown Jewels of Ireland were heavily jewelled insignia of the Most Illustrious Order of St Patrick. They were worn by the sovereign at the installation of knights of that order, the Irish equivalent of the English Order of the Garter and the Scottish Order of the Thistle.


  • Lombardy
Iron Crown of Lombardy, kept in the Cathedral of Monza.

the Iron Crown of the Lombard Kingdom, later used as crown of the medieval Kingdom of Italy and by Napoleon Bonaparte for its coronation as King of Italy, is kept at the Cathedral of Monza. The coronation robe is kept in the Schatzkammer in Vienna, Austria.

  • Kings of Italy

The Crown jewels of the Kingdom of Italy (1861–1946) are in the custody of the Bank of Italy, due to legal controversy between the Italian Republic and the Savoia family. It is not clear who is the legal owner. The value of crowns, diadems and various jewels is valued at over €2,5 Billion.

A scepter consisting of a gilt rod topped with a red-enameled globe topped in turn by a red-enameled Florentine Lily also formed part of the regalia of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany.[9]
  • Grand Dukes of Tuscany

On being made Grand Duke of Tuscany Cosimo I de' Medici was granted the use of an open radial crown with a representation of the red Florentine fleurs-de-lis with its stamens posed between the petals in place of the ray in the front, completely covered with precious stones, by Pope Pius V, who specified that the circlet of this crown be engraved with an inscription that the crown had been granted him to wear by the Pope. On the actual crown made this inscription was place on the back of the circlet, while the front was actually covered with precious stones like the rest of the crown. A sceptre consisting of a gilt rod topped with a red-enameled globe topped in turn by a red-enameled Florentine Lily also formed part of the regalia of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany. The coronation portrait of the Grand Duke Gian Gaston de' Medici shows the same Florentine grand ducal crown closed with the pearl set arches associated with sovereignty. This crown was also used as the heraldic crown in the arms of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.[10]


Monaco features a heraldic crown on its coat-of-arms, but does not possess any crown jewels or regalia per se.



The crown jewels, or royal regalia, of Norway are together with some other old treasures on permanent display in an exhibition next to the Nidaros Cathedral, in Trondheim.


The only surviving part of the Polish Crown Jewels is from the Piast dynasty and consists of the coronation sword known as the Szczerbiec. It is currently on display along with other royal items in the Wawel Royal Castle Museum, Kraków. Most of the Crown Jewels were plundered by foreign invaders such as the Swedes, Germans and Russians.

One of many royal crowns was made for King August II, Elector of Saxony when he became King of Poland in 1697. Since the original set was stolen, a new set was made for the coronation in Kraków. Today it is displayed in the Royal Castle in Dresden, Germany.


The royal Crown of Portugal was made in 1817. It was created in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in the workshop of Don Antonio Gomes da Silva, for King John VI. Today, the crown along with other royal regalia is kept in the Ajuda Palace, Lisbon.


The Romanian Crown Jewels consist of three crowns: the Steel Crown, the Crown of Queen Elisabeta and the Crown of Queen Maria; and two scepters: the Scepter of Ferdinand I and the Scepter of Carol II. They are displayed at The National History Museum of Romania in Bucharest.[11]


The coronation regalia, such as the Great Imperial Crown, the Imperial Orb of Catherine II the Great, the Imperial Sceptre with the Orloff Diamond, the Shah Diamond, and others are kept at the Kremlin Armoury in Moscow. See Imperial Crown of Russia and Monomakh's Cap.[12]



The kingdoms that would consolidate to form Spain during the 15th and 16th centuries, namely the Kingdoms of Castile and Aragon, did not have consistent coronation ceremonies. The last recorded coronation ceremony in what would become Spain occurred in the 15th century; since then, the monarchs were not crowned, but proclaimed. As such, there was decreased importance for a coherent set of crown jewels, as these are usually themselves coronation regalia.

Much of what did exist into the modern era of the regalia of Spain was destroyed in the Great Fire of Christmas Eve 1734.[13] In the 18th century, King Charles III ordered a new crown and sceptre to be made. This crown is made of golden silver, and it features half-arches resting on 8 plates bearing the emblems of the Kingdom. The crown and scepter are displayed during the opening of the Cortes (Parliament). During ceremonies of accession with a new monarch, the crown and scepter are also present, but the crown itself is never placed on the monarch's head. Today they are kept by the Patrimonio Nacional (the Crown Heritage).

Today, there are other pieces of jewelry and historically important items that would be considered "crown jewels" in other countries but are not denominated as such in Spain. In terms of jewelry, all of the jewels and tiaras worn by the members of the Spanish Royal Family are privately owned by them. More historically important elements are kept as pieces of cultural interest in different parts of Spain. For example, the personal crown used by Isabella I of Castile, her scepters, and her sword, are kept in the Royal Chapel in the Cathedral of Granada. As a consequence, this means that beyond the crown and scepter used during important occasions of the Spanish state, there is no other element of the crown jewels of Spain.

King Oscar II of Sweden and Norway wearing the Swedish crown of Erik XIV. Oscar II is the last Swedish king to be crowned


Sweden’s Crown Jewels are kept deep in the vaults of the Royal Treasury, underneath the Royal Palace in Stockholm. The symbols of Swedish monarchy has not actually been worn since 1907, but they are still displayed at weddings, christenings and funerals. Until 1974 the crown jewels were also displayed at the opening of the Riksdag (Parliament). Among the oldest priceless objects are the sword of Gustav Vasa and the crown, orb, sceptre and key of King Erik XIV and numerous other sovereigns.[14]

United Kingdom

The Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom are considered to be the most valuable and one of the largest jewellery collections in existence, with a number of famous diamonds and rubies including the Cullinan Diamond (the largest diamond ever found before it was cut).


The crown jewels of England, and now of the United Kingdom, are kept in the Tower of London. Apart from an Ampule and Spoon they all date from after The Restoration of Charles II in 1661. The ancient crown jewels of England were destroyed by Oliver Cromwell in 1649 when he established Commonwealth of England. Among the original crown jewels were Alfred the Great's State Crown described as "Gould wyerworke set with slight stones and two little bells" which once melted down the gold it contained fetched £248 and 10 shillings, while the little 11th century crown of Queen Edith only realised £16.[15] It is considered that both these crowns date from the 11th century and the crown described as that of Alfred the Great is, in fact, the Crown of St. Edward the Confessor and was renamed thus following the Reformation. There are conflicting legends that this ancient Crown of England still exists; that it was secreted by some Royalist and its hiding place was never revealed, although official sources state that the gold from this crown was recovered and used to make the present St. Edward's Crown.

The State Crown of Henry VII of England included in a portrait of Charles I of England by Daniel Mytens prior to its destruction in 1649.

We know the appearance of the later State Crown of Henry VII, which shared their fate, as it is depicted in some of the portraits of Charles I, by Daniel Mytens and Van Dyck. The state crown of Henry VII had five fleurs-de-lis, five crosses and two arches topped by a gold orb and cross. The five fleurs-de-lis each had the enameled image of a saint on the central upright petal (the front fleur-de-lis had an image of the Virgin and Child, while two of the other fleurs-de-lis had images of St. George and the dragon) as well as precious stones on the two curved side petals, while the five crosses and the arches were ornamented only with precious stones. The early paintings of Charles I show the front fleur-de-lis, (as , for example, in the painting by Daniel Mytens), while later paintings show the cross on the back of the crown (i. e., the crown shown from the back), which some suggest might have been a concession to Puritan objections to the representation of saints on the state crown. There were also various sceptres, swords, coronets, rings and an Anglo-Saxon comb, Some of the pieces were probably reclaimed burial regalia, including those stripped from the rich shrine of Edward the Confessor in Westminster Abbey by Henry VIII. Various medieval garments used in past coronation ceremonies were also sold off at the time, an irreparable loss.[16]

In 1660 when a replacement crown called "St. Edward's Crown" was cast for the coronation of Charles II the gold from the aforementioned King Alfred's Crown (the original crown of Edward the Confessor) was used, so presumably even after the various jewels had been melted down strenuous efforts were made to recover their components. The present Imperial Crown of State is decorated with the principal surviving historic jewels, which were recovered at the time of the Restoration. These include Edward the Confessor's Sapphire, which is set in a Maltese cross at the top of the crown. This sapphire was once part of a ring owned by Edward the Confessor, which was buried with him in 1066. In 1101, when his shrine was opened and the ring removed, the sapphire was re-set in a crown worn by Henry I of England.

Glass copies of the Cullinan diamonds

The ruby which adorns the centre of the Imperial Crown of State has a rich and dramatic history. It once belonged to a Sultan of Granada, who was murdered by Pedro the Cruel, King of Castille. He presented it to Edward, the Black Prince, in gratitude for his military assistance at the Battle of Navaretto in 1367. It was inherited by Edward's son, Richard II of England. Richard had it in his possession when he surrendered to his cousin, the future Henry IV of England in Wales in 1399. Henry later usurped the throne and Richard was murdered. Henry's son, Henry V of England, wore this ruby in the crown he wore around his helmet at the Battle of Agincourt, a bejewelled gold fleuron was struck of this same crown during the battle and lost. The ruby was similarly worn in the crown of Richard III of England at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485. When Richard was killed during the fighting it famously rolled under a hawthorn bush to be retrieved by Lord Stanley and placed on the head of the victorious Henry Tudor, later Henry VII of England. The Imperial Crown of State also contains pearls worn as earrings by Queen Elizabeth I of England, these are suspended from the arches of the crown.


The crown jewels, or 'Honours', including the Stone of Destiny, are kept in Edinburgh Castle. They are the oldest surviving crown jewels in the United Kingdom and were a gift by the Pope to the King of Scotland in the 16th century. They were hidden during the Interregnum. The Honours of Scotland were almost forgotten following their last use at the coronation of Charles II in 1651 until they were discovered in a chest inside Edinburgh Castle in the early Nineteenth century.

A "golden royal crown" pre-dating the existing "Honours of Scotland" had been in existence. It is recorded that it was seized by the English authorities following a search of the luggage of the deposed John Balliol as he attempted to leave England and make his way to exile in France following his release from imprisonment in London in 1299. This crown was sent to King Edward I in London where it was probably placed with the English crown jewels at Westminster Abbey. The later fate of this crown is not entirely clear, but it may have been returned to Scotland during the negotiations between Robert I of Scotland and Edward II of England (following the English defeat at Bannockburn in 1314) or perhaps was returned to Scotland for use in the coronation of Edward Balliol when he was installed as king of Scots by England in 1332. Nevertheless, it is not in existence today.


The Honours of the Principality of Wales.

The original regalia of the Welsh princes have been lost. Llywelyn's coronet was kept after its capture with the English crown jewels between 1284 and 1649.


Latin America


  • The Kingdom of Araucania and Patagonia has a crown, presented to Prince Philippe of Araucania in 1986 by a group of Araucanian "nobles". Previously, the Royal House had no crown. Made of steel and containing stones from the Rio Bio-Bio, it is on display at the Museum of the Kings of Araucania.


Emperor Pedro II and the Brazilian Imperial Regalia

The Imperial Crown of Brazil alongside with other regalia and mementos of the Brazilian Empire are kept at the Imperial Museum of Brazil (Museu Imperial) in the former palace of Brazilian emperor Pedro II, in Petrópolis, Brazil.[17]

North America


Some of the Crown Jewels and the original Thrones of the Kingdom of Hawaii reside within the custody of the Bishop Museum. Copies of the thrones can be seen at Iolani Palace. Some lie in state with the royals at the Royal Mausoleum at Mauna Ala. Feather cloak and wear are among the oldest of Hawaiian regalias: Nahienaena's Pa'u, the 180 feather skirt of Nahienaena and later the funeral attire for the dead monarch while lying in state; Kiwalao's Cloak aka Kamehameha's Cloak, the cloak won by Kamehameha I during his battle with Kiwalao; and Liloa's Kaei, the feather belt of Liloa, the 14th century King of Hawaii. Also the Kiha-pu or the War Trumpet (Conch Shell) of Kihanuilulumoku which is one generation older than Liloa's Kaei.


New Zealand

This Kingdom is an unofficial one, but one that has become an important one to Māori today. The current monarch is Tuheitia Paki. The crown jewels consist of a cloak.


  1. ^ "Menelik II Part II: The Post Adowa Era". Retrieved 2009-10-17. 
  2. ^ "Haile Selassie". Geocities. Retrieved 2009-10-17. 
  3. ^ "The Coronation of His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I". Rasta Ites. Retrieved 2009-10-17. 
  4. ^ "The Collection — Treasury Of The Chapel Of The Tablet". Flickr. Retrieved 2009-10-17. 
  5. ^ History of jewels Pictures and details (requires QuickTime)
  7. ^ See picture at
  8. ^ "Byzantine Vestments". Newsfinder. Retrieved 2009-10-17. 
  9. ^ "The Medici Family - 2 Grand Dukes of the Cadet Branch and their Women - 1530s to 1743". Paradox place. Retrieved 2009-10-17. 
  10. ^ "Toscana". Roberto Breschi. Retrieved 2009-10-16. 
  11. ^ The National History Museum of Romania
  12. ^ "Jewels of the Romanovs: Treasures of the Russian Imperial Court". 
  13. ^ An image of the crown destroyed in 1734 may be seen at
  14. ^ "The Royal Court of Sweden, Regal Symbols". 
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ "Imperial Museum of Brazil". 

External links


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